I've done a littel bit a research into the auto knife market, and the legality of owning and or carrying an auto knife here in Texas, and unfortunately I am still a little confused. From what I gather auto knives are 'legal'. But I have also seen that they may only be 'legal' for 'collectors'. Can anyone shed some light on this situation for me? I have seen some auto knives for sale in the EE, and I am tempted to buy one provided doing so doesn't get me in trouble.
Legal to own...illegal to carry around.
From what I understand, autoknives are defined as illegal knives by Texas law. I think the law makes an exception for "collectors". So, effectively, you could own the knife and keep it at home but are not allowed to carry it or have it outside of your home.
Search the State of Texas website for "knife" laws. It's pretty clear there.
edit: It is considered a switchblade, which is a prohibited weapon:
§ 46.05. PROHIBITED WEAPONS. (a) A person commits an
offense if he intentionally or knowingly possesses, manufactures,
transports, repairs, or sells:
(1) an explosive weapon;
(2) a machine gun;
(3) a short-barrel firearm;
(4) a firearm silencer;
(5) a switchblade knife;
(7) armor-piercing ammunition;
(8) a chemical dispensing device; or
(9) a zip gun.
(b) It is a defense to prosecution under this section that
the actor's conduct was incidental to the performance of official
duty by the armed forces or national guard, a governmental law
enforcement agency, or a correctional facility.
(c) It is a defense to prosecution under this section that
the actor's possession was pursuant to registration pursuant to the
National Firearms Act, as amended.
(d) It is an affirmative defense to prosecution under this
section that the actor's conduct:
(1) was incidental to dealing with a switchblade
knife, springblade knife, or short-barrel firearm solely as an
antique or curio; or
(2) was incidental to dealing with armor-piercing
ammunition solely for the purpose of making the ammunition
available to an organization, agency, or institution listed in
(e) An offense under this section is a felony of the third
degree unless it is committed under Subsection (a)(5) or (a)(6), in
which event, it is a Class A misdemeanor.
(f) It is a defense to prosecution under this section for
the possession of a chemical dispensing device that the actor holds
a security officer commission issued by the Texas Commission on
Private Security and has received training on the use of the
chemical dispensing device by a training program that is:
(1) provided by the Commission on Law Enforcement
Officer Standards and Education; or
(2) approved for the purposes described by this
subsection by the Texas Commission on Private Security.
just call yourself a collector, end of story. Just can't carry them around...
The law is silly. That being said, having owned an AFO for many years (which I no longer do), the "cool factor" wears off quickly, especially when it's sitting in a drawer collecting dust.
The reality is, the rare occurences where an auto opener would be of benefit, do not compensate for everything you give up (accidental openings, more complicated mechanism, not as strong as a comparable regular folder, etc.).
Not recommended (unless you really need some temporary "cool factor" in your life)...
plus you can open most good folders just as quick as an auto...
I disagree. Mine has never opened when I didn't want it to, is no more complicated than any other folder with a button operated lock, and is just as strong. I've actually had my linerlock open accidently a couple of times when the thumbstud caught on something.
All that said, I didn't pay much for mine, so it, predictably, doesn't have a particularly good blade. It'll take an edge fine, but doesn't hold it well. I've considered taking it apart and hardening it, but I've never had a blade come out straight after that. So instead I'm just going to get through this pile of Christmas knives I've dumped on myself and make a new one from scratch. Maybe damascus and mokume?